Developing entrustable professional activities for general dentistry at the University of North Carolina

Rocio B. Quinonez, Angela Broome, Sam Nesbit, Ashley Tittemore, Vicki Kowlowitz, Ibrahim Duqum, Dilek Uyan, Marta L. Musskopf, Keith Phillips, Antonio Moretti, Matt Mason, Alexa Jacobs, Zachary Brian, Miguel Simancas-Pallares, Edward J. Swift, Vidya Ramaswamy, Janet M. Guthmiller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: As part of curriculum innovation, the University of North Carolina (UNC) Adams School of Dentistry identified core entrustable professional activities (EPAs) that graduates must demonstrate for practice readiness. This paper describes the development of the UNC EPAs and the perceptions of the general dentistry faculty. Methods: Upon establishing a blueprint of knowledge, skills, and attitudes of UNC graduates, using a distributed leadership approach, faculty teams developed EPAs focused on the patient care process. The American Dental Education Association Compendium of Clinical Competency Assessments and Commission on Dental Accreditation Standards informed the team's work. Perceptions of the assessment framework were examined using a questionnaire completed by 13 general dentistry faculty considering the importance, accuracy, and agreement of each EPA, associated domains of competence, and encounter management on a 6-point rating scale. Results: Distributed leadership was a useful strategy in EPA development to disperse decision-making and build ownership. Through multiple iterations, four EPAs (assessment, plan of care, collaborative care, and provision of care) with associated sub-EPAs emerged. EPAs included a description, required knowledge and skills, and rubrics for assessment. The general dentistry faculty reported a high level of importance, accuracy, and agreement with EPAs, domains of competence, and encounter management. Discussion: EPAs provide a standardized manner to describe the comprehensive work dentists perform, shifting away from individual competencies. The UNC EPAs provide the foundation for longitudinal measures of competence preparing graduates for independent practice. With limited EPAs frameworks available in dentistry, we aim to inform the development and implementation of EPAs across dental education.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1718-1724
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of dental education
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • assessment
  • clinical skills/topics
  • education
  • educational measurement
  • undergraduate dental

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • General Dentistry


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